A Short History of Pro Tools 1991-2008
This is “Audiomedia,” the precursor to Pro Tools. Two mono tracks or a stereo pair was its limit.
The Mix Window did not yet exist. Audiomedia was available only for the Mac.
The Audiomedia instruction manual, a mere 185 pages in length,
makes no mention of Avid nor of Pro Tools. The year was 1991.
An Audiomedia III card was required to be plugged into a Mac. These cards were predecessors to the external
hardware interfaces, such as the DIGI 001. Audiomedia software would not launch without a card being present.
The Digi Toolbox XP package brought it all together with Digidesign, Pro Tools LE, and Avid.
Chapter 2 of the Toolbox XP manual described how to install the Audiomedia III card into a Mac.
is digidesign’s Pro Tools LE digital audio editing software, version
5.1.1, on a Macintosh equipped with an Audiomedia III sound card,
running under OS 9.2.2. Although a simple session (one stereo pair), it
provides a glimpse of Pro Tools for those who may never have seen it in
action. The small window containing the faders at the right is called
the Mix Window. The even smaller window at the bottom is called the
Transport Window. The large window in the background containing the
waveforms is called the Edit Window. Visit the digidesign site.
Here is Pro Tools LE version 6.1.2 on a Macintosh running under OS X version 10.2.8, “Jaguar.”
This is Pro Tools LE version 6.9.2 on a Macintosh G4 equipped with an Mbox, running under Apple’s OS X 10.4.7, “Tiger.”
This is Pro Tools LE version 7.3 on an Intel-equipped Mac Pro with an Mbox, running under Apple’s OS X 10.4.9, “Tiger.”
This is Pro Tools LE version 8.0.0 on an Intel-equipped Mac Pro with an Mbox, running under Apple’s OS X 10.5.7, “Leopard.”
Guitarist Steve Vai with his Pro Tools hardware.